It has been chaos for a lot of people lately. Many people have been laid off from their jobs and are feeling anxious. Despite everything that’s going on, people are trying their best to navigate the current situation, and in the midst of everything, we are dealing with insurance companies. Sadly, insurance companies are still taking premiums, but are now, more than ever, denying claims. For this reason it’s critical that you know your disability rights during COVID-19.

Your rights during this pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic does not erase your legal rights. Insurance companies have to step up during times of crisis. Remember, insurance companies are still working and still taking your money every month in the form of premiums. Therefore, they are still responsible for paying you if you are disabled and unable to work. For example, if someone is having difficulty psychologically that has been made worse as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic then he or she may be “totally disabled” and unable to work. If this is the situation then he or she should apply for long term disability benefits. Do not think that there is no recourse for you simply because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is business as usual for the insurance companies so do not hesitate to make an application. 

Have you been temporarily laid off because of COVID-19?

There have been an unprecedented number of temporary layoffs. If the layoff is temporary and you become disabled while you are off work then nothing is stopping you from applying for short term disability benefits or long term disability benefits. Depending on the policy, you can receive up to 60%-70% of your pre-disability income. If the coronavirus causes you to have a physical or psychological disability that renders you totally disabled from your occupation or any occupation then you are likely entitled to monthly compensation.

What happens if you need medical testing?

In another example, insurance companies may try to bully people by telling them that they are required to take medical testing and treatment done by a certain deadline or their benefits will be cut off. This is not fair. Recently, it is next to impossible to get in to see a doctor or medical professional. Most of them are on the front lines dealing with the pandemic. Adjusters from the insurance company are looking for ways to cut people’s benefits. If this is the case, an individual can file a claim against their insurance company.

What if you cannot get back to work?

If your doctor has cleared your return to work but everything is delayed due to COVID-19 then your insurance company is bound to keep paying you because you are not able to return to work. Your insurance company may still deny you. This is how they make money. They want to continue taking your monthly premiums but do not want to pay out. This is how they make money. So, if someone is unable to return to work even though they can, then the insurance company should continue to pay you. This is especially the case if the coronavirus has caused you to get worse or develop new medical conditions.

The coronavirus has caused a lot of anxiety. Throughout history humanity has been through wars and global pandemics and we have come back. The coronavirus is no different. We will get through this. We are here to help. If there are any questions or concerns we are happy to answer you for free.

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Daniel Badre Founder, Partner
Daniel Badre is a distinguished personal injury lawyer based in Ottawa, renowned for his unwavering commitment to justice and advocacy for those who have suffered from accidents or negligence. With a legal career spanning over two decades, Badre has established himself as a compassionate and tenacious advocate for his clients.
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